November 27, 2020

OPINION: Todd Akin could still win the election

For those of you living under rocks and other large objects cutting you off from the outside world, Republican Rep. Todd Akin made some stupid and outrageous comments last week. He said, “if it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways of shutting that whole thing down.” This statement brings up many questions.
First of all, what is the difference between a legitimate rape and an illegitimate rape? Where are you getting this information from? How many doses of LSD did you take this morning? His hallucinations about rape and pregnancy have sparked outrage around the world. Many political pundits, politicians and voters assume he will automatically lose the senatorial race or even drop out. These are assumptions that should be quickly forgotten.
Even though all kinds of Republicans are threatening to end their donations to Akin’s campaign, they will eventually monetarily support him for one major reason: Sen. Claire McCaskill. For as much as Democrats dislike Akin for his ignorant comments, Republicans hate Sen. McCaskill for her close relationship to President Barack Obama and her support of large spending bills.
More importantly, this race could determine whether Democrats continue to hold the Senate or if Republicans could tip the odds in their favor. For now, the Republican National Committee under Reince Priebus has promised to “not give him a dime.” However, this statement is insignificant because the campaign finance Supreme Court decision, Citizens United v. FEC, allows anyone to donate as much money as they want to whatever campaign they want.
On top of this, the donations and donors are kept secret. This creates the potential for individual donors and corporations to continue donating to Akin’s campaign without anyone ever knowing about it.
As the home of famous conservatives such as Rush Limbaugh, Missouri is typically thought of as a Republican-leaning state. Nine of 11 Missouri representatives in the 112th Congress are Republicans, including Akin. Of Missouri’s 163 state representatives, 106 are Republicans. The chairmanship in almost every Missouri state house committee is also held by a Republican. In the Missouri state senate, only nine of 34 seats are held by Democrats. On top of all this, the details of these Republicans generally being more conservative than moderate are well documented.
Overall, Akin has no right to be commenting on an issue he clearly knows nothing about. His remarks were insulting to every living person with a brain. Akin should probably not run for Congress considering his archaic ideas. However, he refuses to bow out. Akin also continues to hold support from conservative Missourians — some of whom actually agree with the things he brain-farted.
More importantly, extreme conservatives and Republicans in general are fired up about the upcoming elections and will turn out in large numbers come November. So, unless you are as pissed off in November as you are now and channel that anger through voting, he might be able to pull this one off.
By Tony Laurence

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